The Stoke Level is…

… Very High! Good stuff from over the weekend! Saturday was windless all day, with a nice, soft, easy waist to shoulder high wave rolling in! A glassy ocean is beautiful. Waves seem to appear from nowhere, the perfectly smooth faces provide Cadillac soft rides. Never once did I question the ability of my rail to hold through a turn. These are the days that make you feel good, because it’s just that much easier to push yourself, as opposed to when its firing and, dare I admit it, a bit scary. Dan, Stuart and I surfed all afternoon at ramp 34, fast rights and long lefts, with ridiculous numbers of waves and porpoises!

The wind returned on Sunday, with moderate NNW breeze and cold temps. Stuart and I sailed the hole, and tested out some of the 2008 slalom rigs. I took out my GPS, and registered a 27.5 mph top speed in 14-18 mph breeze! We were pushing ourselves pretty hard, head to head, with lots of different points of sail. I don’t usually run slalom kits, but I have to admit, it’s really fun to just go fast every now and then! Unfortunately, half way through the sesh, I looked down and realized that my GPS had fallen off my wrist…….. arrrrgh! It’s hard to contemplate losing a device that’s meant to keep you from getting lost… However, after trolling and searching the shorelines, I slowly came to grips with losing my new toy. Its a bummer, but it was just a piece of plastic, right? No attachment!

Today was very similar to yesterday but with a touch more wind, about 18-25 mph breeze! Stuart and I decided to set up some buoys and run a figure 8 course, head to head! He had a few anchors at his disposal, so I offered to do some dumpster diving at the recycling center. I came up with two of those big orange Tide detergent jugs, which worked perfectly as jibe markers! Tell you what, going fast, head to head, is exhilarating, and exhausting! I pretty much sailed the same damn path, over and over and over again for hours and hours… and never got bored! Being in the lead is exhausting, because you don’t want to mess up. Following is exhausting, because you want to catch up and pass the leader! It was full throttle, the whole time! I can’t wait for this summer to try to get a few more people running the course with us! The only thing I was missing was that darn GPS that I lost yesterday…

As we were nearing our limit of energy expenditure, the wind started to back off (thank you!). So we gathered the buoys and called it a day. I decided to jump on my SUP and coast down the shoreline, hoping to spot my GPS somewhere… and… success! I found it nestled in the reeds about a mile and a half from where we were sailing, perfectly safe and sound. I had kind of already written it off in my mind, so you can imagine the excitement of spotting it half an hour into the search and rescue mission! Disaster averted!

I’m tempted to postulate a little life lesson from this GPS story… Probably something along the lines of “don’t lose hope” or “never give up trying.” But I think that in the end, all that can be learned from this experience is to tie the damn thing on really well so that you don’t lose it in the first place!